Website design By BotEap.comMost of us have heard the word “globalization” widely used in a variety of contexts in recent years. But what is the actual definition of this commonly used term? Merriam-Webster defines globalization as “The act or process of globalization: the state of globalization; especially: the development of an increasingly integrated global economy marked especially by free trade, the free flow of capital and the exploitation of labor markets cheaper foreigners. “Now that we have established the true definition of globalization, it is probably easy to see how it plays a vital role in the tourism industry. After all, people visiting other countries would naturally get involved in globalization as they buy products and services on their travels. But what may not be so obvious is how successful tourism led to globalization. That is the topic that we will explore in this blog.

Website design By BotEap.comAlthough it is difficult to say exactly when the tourism industry began, many historians would agree that it likely began when well-to-do citizens of ancient Rome began spending their summers in other parts of the region to escape the hustle and bustle of what it was then. (and it is, even now) the metropolis of Rome. That would mean that tourism is at least 2,000 years old. But the end of the Roman Empire also spelled the end of tourism, albeit only for a few hundred years, as unrest in that region made travel of any kind a risky proposition at best. A few hundred years later, during medieval times, the tourism industry underwent a revival when large groups of people began making holy pilgrimages. That meant those people needed places to eat and sleep along the way. A few hundred years later, people began traveling for other reasons, such as improving their health and seeing art, architecture, and visiting historical sites. It was at this time, during the Industrial Revolution, that the tourism industry began to take the familiar shape we know today. Transportation methods, as well as hotels and restaurants, were developed to cater to tourists. Finally, beginning in the 1960s, when airplanes and ocean liners became more common and more affordable to the masses, tourism became a global industry. These days, if you have the time and money, you can arrange to travel literally anywhere on the planet.

Website design By BotEap.comAnd it turns out that many people HAVE the time and the money. According to The Statistics Portal, between 2006 and 2017, the travel and tourism industry contributed $ 8.27 trillion to the global economy. The largest contributors include North America, the European Union, and Northeast Asia. While these regions continue to lead the tourist load, other less likely countries are leaving their own mark on the industry, no doubt due to the lucrative possibilities that tourism brings. Some of the most notable are African countries, such as Namibia, Zambia, and Angola, to name a few.

Website design By BotEap.comIn the KOF Globalization Index of the 100 most globalized countries in 2017, it should come as no surprise that many EU countries top the list, including the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, Sweden, France and others. Also on the list, albeit lower than the EU countries, are Canada and the US The KOF Globalization Index takes into account three key indicators: economic, social and political. They define globalization as, “… the process of creating networks of connections between actors at multi-continental distances, mediated through a variety of flows that include people, information and ideas, capital and goods.” While there is no question about the economic impact that tourism has on a global scale, the other indicators of globalization are more difficult to measure, namely the social and political influences that the tourism industry brings to the global stage. But if we measure the impact of tourism on globalization with respect to the flow of people, information and ideas, as well as capital and goods, we can say with some level of certainty that the success of the tourism industry has likely led the way, both directly as indirectly, towards globalization.

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